In the Rockford area, February's brought 20 inches of snow and the clean-up crews to follow.
Rockford and Winnebago County departments in charge of snow removal and salting planned ahead in their budgets for this month's weather. Trucks returned Wednesday afternoon from a day of clean-up after a night of snow and cold. It's been a busy month, with two major storms so far. Rockford started the winter season with 14,000 tons of salt and barely touched that until recently.
"Since the February 1st, we've used almost 11,000 tons of salt." -says Rockford Public Works Director Tim Hanson.
The Winnebago County Highway Department has a similar story.
"We're at about 70% ordered for what our requisition was for the year so we're standing pretty good. March usually is very light it tends to go more to the rain, so unless nature throws us a curve ball or something, I'll think we'll be pretty good to get through, we might be at the 100% usage but that's good." -says Operations Manager Dan Davis.
That might mean a reduction in left-overs for next season. Last year, the county had about 4,000 tons of salt to spare.
"We might be down to around 1,000 or 2,000 tons." -says Davis.
Hanson says manpower is down this year, saving the city some money, Winnebago County's got the same number crews as in years past. As for the salt Rockford workers are laying down, the city's got enough to get through March, thanks to an early shipment.
"We're starting to draw into our 2013 contract now, we've taken 2,000 tons of a 4,000 ton purchase, so we have about 5,000 tons sitting on hand right now."
Both the city and county strongly urge drivers to give plow and salt trucks plenty of space during operations and to follow odd/even parking rules during snowy weather.
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